A domestic white duck was found on a lawn in North Patchogue with a target arrow piercing its neck, and authorities are searching for the culprit who shot it.
Roy Gross, chief of the Suffolk County Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, said the wounded adult Pekin duck, probably an abandoned pet, was found alive Saturday on Poe Place by a resident who often feeds the ducks in the area.
The arrow, tipped with a target point, was sticking through its neck and esophagus.
"It was a deliberate act," Gross said, adding that Pekins -- also known as Long Island ducks -- do not fly, and are generally tame and trusting of humans. "It was not a wild duck during hunting season."
Gross said the wound appeared fresh and it was likely that the duck was shot with the arrow in the neighborhood. Investigators are trying to trace the perpetrator through markings on the arrow, he said.
"What kind of person would do something like that to an innocent animal?" Gross said. "This is not a sportsman. This is just someone who wants to commit an act of animal cruelty."
The duck is recovering at the Save the Animals Rescue Foundation, a wildlife rehabilitator in Middle Island.
Lori Ketcham, one of the directors, said the duck was likely to recover from its injuries in a few weeks, after which it will be released back to its flock.
"The duck was very lucky," Ketcham said.
The SPCA is offering a $1,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the perpetrator. The agency asks that anyone with information about the incident call the SPCA confidentially at 631-382-7722.
It's not the first time such an incident has occurred on Long Island. In July 2011, a kayaker near a Riverhead park found a swan that had been impaled with an arrow through its body.
That bird made a full recovery and was released back into the wild two months later.